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Morning Headlines: Right-Wing Super PAC Backs Mandel; Summit County Approves Jail Task Force

photo of Josh Mandel

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, October 3rd:

  • Cleveland moves ahead with planned downtown arts district;
  • Summit County unanimously approves jail task force;
  • Right-wing super PAC backs Josh Mandel in U.S. Senate bid;
  • On The Table Greater Akron expected to draw nearly 6,000 people;
  • U.S. Supreme Court will not review cop killer's convictions;
  • Officers wounded in Cleveland suburb are recovering;
  • Youngstown developer accused of funneling government money;
  • Sowell appeal will not be on  the U.S. Supreme Court docket this year;
  • Youngstown football player gets settlement;

Cleveland moves ahead with planned downtown arts district
The City of Cleveland is moving ahead with plans to create an arts district downtown. City Council voted yesterday to create a board that will hear possible objections to the project from property owners. The arts community would sit between East 18th and East 26th streets. The area is already home to repurposed buildings that house galleries, artist studios, and apartments. Council President Kevin Kelley told Cleveland.com the goal is to spark growth similar to what’s happened in the Gordon Square neighborhood. Nearly two-thirds of property owners in the area petitioned last month for the arts district.

Summit County unanimously approves jail task force
Summit County Council has unanimously approved the creation of a commission to suggest improvements to the county jail a month after an inmate died following a fight with sheriff's deputies. Council passed a measure creating a 10-member advisory commission on jail operations. Members will include the president of the local NAACP chapter and representatives from the sheriff's office and the county prosecutor's office. Council member David Hamilton says the proposal grew out of long-standing concerns about issues at the jail but gained immediacy after the Sept. 2 death of inmate Anthony Jones.

Right-wing super PAC backs Josh Mandel in U.S. Senate bid
A group of right-wing activists has formed a new super PAC that’s backing Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel in his bid for the U.S. Senate next year. Among other things, the group’s members are known for promoting the fake “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory about Hillary Clinton and denying the existence of rape. Mandel has publicly defended group members via Twitter. The Revolution 2018 super PAC tells Cleveland.com it chose Mandel as its first candidate because of his America-first agenda and relatively young age. One member has already put up $50,000 of his own money and expects to raise more from major donors.

On The Table Greater Akron expected to draw nearly 6,000 people
An event in Akron that brings community members together to share a meal and discuss ways to strengthen the city is expected to draw about 6,000 people. On The Table Greater Akron is a local spin-off of a community initiative that began in Chicago four years ago.  Cleveland.com reports the 30 hosts will include members of city and county government, religious groups, and mental health agencies. Some groups will talk about specific issues like the opioid epidemic, while others are more open-ended. More than 500 conversations over meals are set to place at venues around Akron today.

U.S. Supreme Court will not review cop killer's convictions
The U.S. Supreme Court won't review the murder conviction of a man sentenced to death for killing a Cleveland police officer. Cleveland.com reports that the case of 47-year-old Quisi Bryan is among those that the court has declined to review during this term. He was condemned for shooting Wayne Leon in 2000 after the officer stopped Bryan for a traffic violation. A federal judge overturned Bryan's convictions in 2015 and concluded that prosecutors had improperly sought to remove a prospective juror because the juror was black. Bryan also is black. A federal appeals court reversed that decision and reinstated his convictions in December. Bryan had asked the nation's high court to review that ruling.

Officers wounded in Cleveland suburb are recovering
Police say two officers wounded in a shooting at a car dealership have been released from a hospital and are recovering at home. Willoughby Hills police said the officers were shot after they were called to a dealership Thursday about a problem with a customer. The officers returned fire and shot the man, who remains hospitalized and has not yet been charged. Investigators have not released the names of the officers or the suspect.

Youngstown developer accused of funneling government money
Authorities say a developer has been indicted in a corruption probe on more than 100 counts related to development projects in northeast Ohio. Dominic Marchionda is the CEO of NYO Property Group and has ties to more than 60 companies in Youngstown. According to the indictment, Marchionda is accused of illegally obtaining money from the city as well as the state and federal government for a student housing complex and on apartment complex projects.

Sowell appeal will not be on  the U.S. Supreme Court docket this year
The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear an appeal by a Cleveland man sentenced to die for killing 11 women and hiding the remains in and around his home. At issue were arguments by 58-year-old Anthony Sowell over the closure of an evidence hearing during his trial and his rejected offer to plead guilty. Sowell lost the argument in the Ohio Supreme Court and appealed to the nation's high court, which turned down the appeal Monday. The trial judge closed a pre-trial hearing to the public about the admissibility of Sowell's 11-hour videotaped police interrogation. Sowell's attorneys objected to the move. The judge ultimately allowed the use of the video.

Youngstown football player gets settlement
Youngstown State University has agreed to settle a federal lawsuit with a football player convicted of rape as a teen who sued after the school allowed him to join the team and then told him he couldn't play this season. Ma'lik Richmond of Steubenville will remain on the team's active roster under the deal announced Monday. Richmond will undergo unspecified training and university will pay for outstanding court costs. Richmond made the team earlier this year but was told in August that he couldn't play after a student circulated a petition to keep him off the team.